City Scene

17th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade Returns March 11

The City of Gaithersburg, in partnership with Rio Washingtonian Center and the Harp and Shamrock Society, will host the 17th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 11 at Rio Washingtonian Center (I-370 and Washingtonian Boulevard). Dozens of units will march in the parade, including Celtic dancers, bagpipe bands, school groups, clowns, fire trucks, equestrian units, service organizations, and more. The parade will be emceed by Tommy McFly, Kelly Collis and Jen Richer of 94.7 Fresh FM’s “The Tommy Show.” Grand marshals this year will be parade founders John Barry and Ed Duffy. Following the parade there will be live entertainment on the Lakefront Plaza until 1 p.m.

Changes to City’s Bicycle Ordinance Considered

The Feb. 21 Mayor and City Council meeting conducted a public hearing on amendments to the City Code Chapter 19-4 that addresses the use of sidewalks by bicycles and other vehicles. Current law prohibits bicycles with a 20-inch or larger diameter wheel, motorcycles and motor-propelled bicycles, and any other vehicle transporting persons or things, except conventional children’s toys. Proposed changes would allow bicycles, electric bicycles, wheelchairs and electric personal assistive mobility devices on sidewalks with protections for pedestrians; the pedestrian has the right of way, must be given an audible warning from a bicyclist or person operating another vehicle, and bicycles may be prohibited in specific areas by signs.

The public record will remain open for 10 days until 5 p.m. on March 3. The Mayor and City Council will conduct a final discussion on the ordinance amendment at a later meeting.

Legal Appeal Filed on Johnson Annexation

Gaithersburg resident Aaron Rosenzweig filed a suit Feb. 1 with the Circuit Court for Montgomery County. At issue is the legality of the annexation vote, taken Dec. 19, 2016, to annex approximately 23 acres along Darnestown Road, abutting the Darnestown and Quince Orchard intersection, into the City of Gaithersburg. The city was served Feb. 16 and has 30 days to respond. City Attorney Lynn Board said that the city plans on “responding and vigorously defending this action.”

Bids Solicited for Watkins Mill Interchange

The Hogan Administration released contract documents for the Watkins Mill Interchange project Feb. 22. The administration contends that the Maryland Open Transportation Investment Decision Act of 2016, also known as the “road-kill bill,” could stall the project. State Del. Kirill Reznik said that because the interchange was previously approved, it is not subject to scoring under the legislation.

Volunteer With the City’s Summer Camp Programs

The City of Gaithersburg is now accepting applications for 2017 Summer Camp volunteers. Volunteer programs include the Ascending Leaders Institute (required for all new volunteers), Counselors-in-Training, and the Inclusion Recreation Volunteer Program. Applicants must be at least 14 years of age or entering the 9th grade in the fall of 2017 to be considered for a volunteer position. All applicants must attend a mandatory training on Saturday, June 3 and be able to commit to an entire two-week session.

For more information, visit www.gaithersburgmd.gov/leisure/camps/volunteer-opportunities. The application deadline is March 15.

Gaithersburg Collecting Supplies for End of School Year

The City of Gaithersburg Educational Enrichment Committee, in conjunction with the Division of Community Services, is holding a school supply collection drive. Donations can be dropped off at the Community Services Office in the Wells/Robertson House facility at 1 Wells Ave. (next to City Hall) weekdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. through March 15. For a list of items needed, visit www.gaithersburgmd.gov/news/press-releases/2017/02/20170213-gaithersburg-collecting-supplies-for-end-of-school-year.

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